Friday, June 8, 2012

The Dream and the Miracle

by Rav Yaakov bar Nahman

I heard this story from Dr. Yisrael Levy of Tsfas this week. He heard it from a patient this week. The patient heard it from a doctor who teaches a class that the patient attends. The doctor was involved in the story himself. Sorry, nobody gave me any names. Believe it if you are so inclined.

About two weeks ago, a man in Israel saw his late father in a dream. He had not been visited by his late father for many, many years and so it was very unusual. In the dream, his father came to warn him. The following words are mine, a paraphrase of how I heard the story:

“You are being summoned in a few days to the beit din l’malla (court appearance in the heavenly court above). You need to testify as a witness against a man who is coming up for judgment. Years ago, when you were his student, he publicly embarrassed you in front of the class. You never forgave him for the humiliation. They are calling you to testify to this against the man when he comes up for judgment.”

The man asked his father in his dream if he would return to earth after this court appearance above. There was no answer. Very shaken by the dream, the man went to Rav Chaim Kenenievsky (I can’t spell his name, and I can’t say it either. He is the elderly gadol in Bnei Brak who was recently widowed of his saintly Rebbetzin.) The tzadik annulled the dream. However, the man couldn’t shake off the fear and couldn’t forget about it. He went back to the sage and told him that it still bothered him tremendously. The sage told him that in this case, he would need to assemble 3 witnesses for a beit din (court ruling). They did that. The three men ruled that the man should search all over Isreal for his ex-teacher, hopefully find him still alive, and tell the teacher that he completely forgives him. So the man starts looking for his past teacher. He can’t find him anywhere in Jerusalem. Finally, he finds his address in B’nei Brak and goes to his door. Nobody answers. He knocks on the neighbors’ doors. A neighbor tells him that his past teacher is extremely ill, in the hospital in intensive care, and isn’t expected to survive much longer. He finds the hospital and goes there.

As he is walking towards the door of the teacher’s intensive care hospital room, a doctor (same doctor who told this story to his class) intercepts him and asks him if he is family. He says he is not family. The doctor says that in that case, he can’t see the patient, and he is not allowed to give him any detailed information. The man is desperate. He tells the frum doctor the story about his dream and the beit din decision. The doctor says, “Well, the man’s son is sitting there outside of his father’s room. Let’s ask him if he grants permission for you to talk to his father. His father is very, very weak.” They tell the story to the son, who decides that it is important and gives permission for the man to speak to his ex-teacher.

The man enters the room and sees his ex-teacher hooked up to tubes everywhere, on a respirator, and looking like he is not long for this world. But he is conscious. He sits down next to the bed and he introduces himself. “Many years ago, I was your student. One day, you embarrassed me in front of the class, and I have carried a grudge against you for that all these years. I never forgave you. I came to you to tell you that I now fully forgive you with all my heart.” (My paraphrase.)

The sick man said, “Todah (thank you),” and the visitor left the sick man’s room. Within a few hours, the sick man showed much improvement. The vital signs were so good that they were able to start to take out some of the tubes and apparatus. In a another short while, he was sitting up and his energy was returning. Within a few days, he was discharged from the hospital and walked out well.

The man who had the dream and forgave his teacher went back to Rav Kenenievsky to tell him how his ex-teacher has recovered against all odds after he forgave him. The sage told him that in our generation, these open miracles are getting very rare, where it is so clear that the healing came from a spiritual source. And therefore the man has a responsibility to publicize the story. It will help many people to realize the power of the spiritual realm and the importance of forgiving. In this case, two lives were saved by the man being able to forgive his ex-teacher, the man’s life and the teacher’s life.

So I’ve done my part to publicize the story to my e-mail friends. I suggest that we all look inside and see if there is someone whom we should forgive. It could save a life or two. Or at very least take a harsh judgment off of us and them.


Anonymous said...

Only yesterday on the radio there was an article about chronic depression and how it is linked to guilt - Thanks for this, I believe this story kate b

yaak said...

Leah said...

That's an incredible story. I am not so good in this area. There are definitely people who I do not forgive and they have not recognized or asked for forgiveness. I hear people saying all the time (in your face like, too) that we all just foregive and blah blah blah. For me it is black and white and yet I am impressed by those who SINCERELY forgive. Much work to be done.